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World Test Championship

Rohit 'too good a player' to not play Tests, says India batting coach

Ind v SA, 3rd Test, reaction

India's batting coach, Vikram Rathour, says he always believed that Rohit had the ability to suceed at Test level.

Rathour made the comments after the first day of the final Test between India and South Africa. Rohit played a key role in ensuring that his side finished the day on top, reaching stumps unbeaten on 117.

"Somebody of his experience and the kind of cricket he plays, if he starts coming good top of the order, it changes everything for the Indian team, even when you're touring. I always believed he is too good a player not to be playing in any format. It was a good call to make him to open. With the amount of runs he has scored, he has settled the issue for the time being," Rathour said.

Rohit had to battle through a tough period early in the day, during which South Africa picked up three wickets – two of them falling to Kagiso Rabada. But the former India and Punjab batsman also said that Rohit's change in fortune was down to a change in mindset, not technique.

"He is such an experienced player. I don't think you need to change anything with his technique. The only adjustment I think he had to make was his game plans. In Tests, you need to play through those tough spells that you will get. I think he's doing that well in this series. Once he's set, he's a phenomenal player, we all know that he can really punish you."

Asked about Rabada's spell Rathour was full of praise: "He showed why he's rated so highly. He bowled in great areas and there was a lot of movement in the wicket."

Asked if India would consider changing the opening partnership, Rathour rubbished the idea, suggesting that Rohit and Mayank Agarwal had done plenty to cement their spots in the team: "Mayank has scored a double and a hundred. Rohit has scored three hundreds so far. Why would we want to change it? I don't think there's any question of changing."

Rohit was accompanied to the close by Ajinkya Rahane, who finished 83*, who Rathour was also glowing in praise of.

"Ajinkya showed great intent today. Whenever he bats with this intent, he looks a really good player. As I said earlier also, they bowled in good areas initially and there was help in the wicket, so Rohit had some problem early on. Of course, as a batsman, you need to survive that time, which Rohit did really well. Anybody will look uncomfortable because those were tough conditions."

 

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